08/16/2011, 00.00
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Nepal, records of baptisms for the feast of the Assumption

30 children received baptism and first communion in the Cathedral of the Assumption of Kathmandu. The invitation of the Bishop Sharma to imitate the Virgin Mary to be true disciples of Jesus
Kathmandu (AsiaNews) - Catholics in Nepal celebrated the feast of the Assumption with 30 baptisms and first communions. According to the local Catholic leaders, this is the largest celebration of baptism since the fall of the Hindu monarchy in 2006.

The ceremony was held yesterday at the Cathedral of the Assumption of Kathmandu. Among the baptized were five Africans, who arrived in Nepal with their parents who emigrated to work. To celebrate this occasion, the diocese organized traditional songs and offered a special feast of thanksgiving in the local cathedral.

Bishop Anthony Sharma of Kathmandu emphasized to the small catechumens the importance of baptism and communion on the day of the Assumption into heaven of the Virgin, asking them to follow the example of Mary. "I pray - he said - so you all can imitate Our Lady, and become true disciples of Jesus and promoters of Catholicism through his intercession."

Since 2006 with the fall of the Hindu-monarchy and the declaration of a secular state, Christians in Nepal have greater freedom of worship and expression in society. For years, the number of Christians has been steadily growing and is now estimated at two million. Even the small Catholic community has been a steady increase of the faithful, so that today there are about nine thousand. The Catholic Church is active in education and operates 31 schools, eight in Kathmandu alone, involving 65 priests, 17 religious and more than 160 sisters. (K.P.)
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